This has been such a great experience. Every time I get on the ice I think I'm playing better and better. I was definitely nervous at first but now I just go out and do the same thing that I've been doing since I was six years old, play hockey.
Walking outside in this beautiful weather reminds me of playing baseball in the summers. This is the first summer that I can remember where I haven’t played Baseball.
I played ‘AAA’ baseball growing up in Ontario. Our team, the Georgetown Eagles, won two National Championships, one in Pee Wee and one in Bantam. Both times we beat Quebec on the finals. The first time it was in Quebec City and the second time it was on Vaughn, Ontario.
It was ironic getting drafted by the Flames in the NHL while a bunch of my friends that I played ball with ended up just getting drafted into the MLB.
I played Centerfield and the hand-eye coordination I think has really helped me with my hockey skills. A lot of people don’t realize the thinking game and strategy in Baseball is such a big part of the game. I think it’s really helped me with my hockey career. It’s been a nice break in the summers as well so that I was never playing hockey 12 months of the year. It allowed me to come back to the rink rejuvenated.
Even though I played a high level of baseball I always knew that Hockey is what I wanted to do and was the sport I was passionate about. Baseball was just something I played in the summer for fun.
Some people might not like this but I was always a Yankees fan. Even though I’ve never been to the Bronx I’ve always loved the Yankees. Derek Jeter was one of my favorite players as well. He’s one of those guys that can get the job done year-in and year-out no matter what. It seems like he’s ageless.